Wedding invitation wording, get it right and you’ve created something that will inspire you and your guests for years to come!
The problem is that there are so many different ways of doing the wedding invitation wording. Your choice will depend on your theme, the type of wedding you’re having, and how formal the invitation needs to be.
Getting the wedding invitation wording right can seem like a nightmare, but it doesn’t need to be. Simply check out this guide to wedding invitation wording and you’ll be creating the perfect invitation in no time!
Get the Wedding Invitation Wording Right
Regardless of the format and the language you choose to use on your wedding invitation, there are some pieces of information that need to be displayed. Without these, your guests won’t know who is getting married, where, or even when.
You’ll need to include the following facts even though the wording can be to your own tastes:
- Who’s wedding it is. Don’t forget that you’ll also need to mention the hosts.
- A request that the guest(s) named on the invitation will come to the wedding.
- The date and time of your wedding, this may be a reminder to people if you’ve already sent out save the date cards.
- Where the wedding is going to be.
- The reception. If you’re having a reception after make sure that your wedding guests know where this is. The wedding invitation wording should be clear enough so that wedding guests know what to expect.
- Your wedding guests need to know if there is a dress code, this could be a suit or Harry Potter fancy dress, depending on the theme of your wedding.
- RSVP – the easier you make it for people to reply, the more likely it is you’ll get an accurate picture of the number of people attending your wedding.
As you can see the wedding invitation wording needs to be just right, you’ll need to get the attention of your potential guests and make sure they have all the information they need, without making the invitation too long!
That’s a challenge that only the best wedding invite wording can rise to!
Keep It Traditional
The traditional wedding invitation gives all the important information in a standard and practical layout.
It is worth noting that if the bride’s parents are paying for the wedding day it is customary to leave the bride’s surname off the invitation wording. Of course, if the bride has a different surname to her parents you’ll need to include this in the wording.
“Mr. and Mrs. John L. Smith request the pleasure of your presence at the marriage of their daughter Heather Marie to Michael Francis Jacobson
Saturday, the seventeenth of May two thousand and twenty. At six o’clock in the evening
Plaza Hotel, New York
Reception to follow”.
Depending on the style of wedding you are going for you can adjust this wording to be less formal. For example, the wedding invitation wording could say “James and Fiona invite you to share in their joy at the marriage….” Instead of “Mr. and Mrs. John L. Smith request the pleasure of your presence at the marriage”.
Don’t forget that the wedding invitation wording should reflect who is hosting the day. If both parents are hosting the wedding then both parents should be listed on the first two lines.
The order in which you place their names is up to you, it can be alphabetical, by financial contribution, or simply by which parents are the favourites!
Hosting It Yourself
If you and your partner are hosting the wedding yourselves then you may want to change the wording on the invitation to reflect this.
The main difference is that the hosting line will not be present. After all, you’re the host and the most important person at your wedding, your invitation wording should reflect this!
“The honour of your presence is requested at the marriage of Heather Marie Smith to Michael Francis Jacobson
Saturday, the seventeenth of May two thousand and twenty, at half-past four in the afternoon”.
Again, you can make it less formal by removing “the honour of your presence….”, and simply inviting your guests to attend your wedding ceremony.
Your decision will depend on the type of ceremony you’re going to have and your wedding invitation wording will reflect this.
In the modern world, it is very common for both sets of parents to contribute, as well as the bride and groom. This means that everyone wants to be mentioned on the wedding invitation wording.
It is worth checking this first, some parents are happy not to have their names on the invitation, leaving you free to go with the simplified personal format.
Of course, you’ll need more space on your wedding invitation for all these names.
“Ms. Heather Marie Smith and Mr. Michael Francis Jacobson together with their parents Mr. and Mrs. John L. Smith & Mr. and Mrs. Mark Franklin Jacobson request the honour of your presence at their wedding
Saturday, the seventeenth of May two thousand and twenty, at half-past four in the afternoon”.
Again, you can make this less formal by simply listing the bride and grooms names and “together with their parents”. This will keep the wedding invitation wording shorter!
A Deceased Parent
It’s always sad when a parent is deceased and can’t be there to witness this special day, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be acknowledged in the wedding invitation wording.
“Together with their families, Ms. Heather Marie Smith, daughter of John Smith and the late Eliza Smith, and Michael Francis Jacobson, son of Mr. and Mrs. Mark Franklin Jacobson, request the honour of your presence at their marriage Saturday, the seventeenth of May two thousand and twenty. At six o’clock in the evening
Plaza Hotel, New York
Reception to follow”
In essence, this invitation reflects the same wording as the other examples above, the main difference is the word ‘late’ added in front of the deceased.
Of course, including them in the wedding invitation wording is not the only way to ensure they are remembered during your special day.
Other Suggestions For Your Wedding Invitation Wording
All the above suggestions revolve around the same central theme, a traditional approach to your wedding invitation wording.
However, it is now possible to get married virtually anywhere and to choose the style and theme of your wedding. It’s possible to go with a fairytale princess, Harry Potter, or even have everyone in Superhero costumes.
With so much variety it shouldn’t be surprising that the wording for your wedding invitation is changing and evolving. Providing the relevant facts are displayed, there really is no limit to what is possible:
“Because you have believed in them, celebrated with them, loved and encouraged them!
We, (brides parents names) and (grooms parents names)
Ask you to join us in honouring our children – (names as they celebrate the beginning of their adventures together)
Date and location
Bring your dancing shoes dinner and music immediately following the ceremony”.
As much as you may like to it’s probably not possible to invite everyone to the events of the whole day, you may need to send evening only invitations. You can keep it simple with:
“Join us for a wonderful evening of merriment & marriage
Names of bride and groom
Date and time
Or you can make it a little more fun:
“You are not invited to our wedding.
Name of bride and groom
Mention if they are to be married earlier that day or if they are already married.
Please join us for a casual reception to celebrate our marriage.
Date, time, and address.
You can use any poem, or part of a poem, you like to get a message of romance across on your wedding invitation. This is a particularly nice one:
“A celebration of love and friendship
Love is the greatest adventure
A kiss to build a dream on
All you need is love.
Two become one”.
Don’t forget to add your names, the date of your wedding, the time, and the location to the bottom, otherwise, people will think it’s just a lovely poem!
When you already have children
“Warm ocean waves will do the clapping as our vows we say.
The bright blue sky will be our canopy, on our wedding day.
Please join Dwayne and Eliza, along with their lovely daughters, Katherine, Elizabeth, Isabelle & Cheyenne, as we continue our life journey together, a blended family, uniting legally & lawfully.
This is particularly nice as it involves the extended family and emphasizes the fact that you are all dedicated to each other, becoming one unit.
Keeping It Casual
You can keep the invitation casual or even use this example if you’re looking for invitation wording when renewing your vows:
“You’re the echoes of my everything… you’re the reason why I burst and why I bloom.”
~Motion City Soundtrack,
[Partners] along with their families, invite you to their garden party wedding for a whimsically reverent celebration of love
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Food, drink, and merriment to follow
Adding the Humor
It can be nice to keep your wedding lighthearted and fun, especially if that’s the sort of people you are and the theme you want for your wedding.
If that’s the case inject some fun into the invitations and start the process off as you mean to go on:
“You are totally invited to the wedding of
Partner & Partner
Sunday, the twenty-seventh of September two thousand and nine at five in the evening
The ceremony is followed by dinner, drinks, and awkward but enthusiastic dancing”.
We will be attending your awesome wedding
[ ] True
[ ] False
___ guests will be attending
“Are you wondering…
where to stay?
what to do in town?
what’s on the menu?
where the wedding is?
who are these people?
Please visit the wedding website”
Laughing At Yourself
You don’t have much room on an invitation but if you get the one-liner right you’ll set the right tone for the entire wedding. After all, you’re celebrating a big occasion, you want it to be fun!
“Partner & Partner
Invite you to join the fun
As they stand together with sweaty hands & open hearts
extending their friendship to include the vows of marriage.
Location and time
Dinner, dancing, and merriment to follow
Costumes encouraged: Theme is Harry Potter
Or try this longer version:
Sitting in the tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G
First comes love,
Now comes marriage.
They are going to the chapel,
and are gonna get ma-a-arried.
Put your glad rags on and join us
We’ll have fun when the clock strikes two.
Our hands are shakey and our knees are weak,
Who do you thank when you have such luck?
Bells will ring, the sun will shine.
I’ll be his and he’ll be mine.
From the day we say I do,
We’ll love until the end of time,
And we’ll never be lonely anymore.
Please join us on Saturday, June 25th, 2011
The Farmer’s Museum
Top Tips When Preparing Your Wedding Invitation Wording
The rules around wedding invitation wording are evolving, society is changing and not all the traditional formats remain valid.
It’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the small tweaks and changes that make a difference to your invitation.
- An invitation for a formal wedding should have everything written out in full, no numerals should be present.
- If you’re doing a formal wedding invitation then you don’t have to specify the year of the occasion, it is assumed it is the nearest date. Of course, you can put the year if you prefer.
- Casual wedding invitations can use numerals, there are no hard and fast rules as long as the wedding invitation wording includes all the relevant facts.
- Tradition dictates that the bride’s name goes before the grooms, regardless of whether the names are at the top of the invitation or several lines down. The tradition dates back to when the bride’s parents were expected to pay for the wedding.
- If the word ‘honour’ is included in an invitation then it is assumed that the ceremony will be held in a religious place of worship.
- The dress code should be mentioned in the bottom right corner of your invitation. A failure to include any specific reference will leave people to draw their own conclusion based on the wedding invitation wording and presentation. The more formal it looks the more formal the dress code.
- The RSVP card is traditionally separate, allowing your guests to return it while keeping the beautifully presented invitation. Although modern RSVP’s are often completed via your wedding website or email, it is still a nice touch to keep the RSVP card, with website and email address on it, separate from the official invitation.
This will allow your guests to choose their preferred method of responding to your invitation, without having to damage the invite.
- Keep it simple. It doesn’t matter if you’re going traditional or modern, the simpler the invite the easier it is for people to know what it is when it is and what they should be wearing. This doesn’t mean you can’t add your own personal touch, but keep it light and simple.
- Don’t forget the call to action. Just including the RSVP details isn’t enough, you need to tell your potential guests what to do next. That is a reply to you. It’ll make it much easier to work out the numbers and all the other details!
If you want to get the wedding invitation wording right then you need to consider the formality of your wedding and who is hosting the event. This will make a big difference in how the wedding invitation wording is presented.
But, when preparing for your special day, don’t forget that it is what you want that really matters. It is possible to break the rules, or simply bend them and still have the wedding of your dreams. All you need to do is understand what should be on your wedding invitation wording and why.
At the end of the day, this is your wedding day, you need to create the invitation that will make you smile in years to come. There is no point sticking to formality and then wishing you’d done it differently. Unless you plan to renew your vows you’ll only get one shot at this!
You’ll then be able to select the wedding invitation wording that is most relevant for your wedding and the message you need to get across. This will help to ensure all your guests arrive suitably attired and ready to celebrate the most important day in your life.
Wedding invitation ideas:
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